Newsday’s Verne Gay reports today that extorted Late Show host David Letterman still hasn’t signed the two-year contract extension that would keep him on the air past next August, which he was reportedly close to signing in June. And, hey, come to think of it, we don’t remember an official announcement of a done deal either, which is a little weird.
Dave was said to be considering a reduced licensing fee (CBS would pay less for The Late Show than it has been), and even leaving open the possible option to continue past 2012. But then the silly Sarah Palin controversy hit and speculation was that CBS might not be happy. Then he admitted to sleeping with subordinates, which we can’t imagine went over well with the network either. Did Dave decide that re-upping his contract wasn’t worth the trouble? Is CBS dragging its feet because of his bad publicity? Or, since all of this has probably only helped Letterman’s Conan-killing ratings, is he just holding out for a higher licensing fee and bigger paycheck? We hope it’s that last one.
Will Letterman leave by next summer, or … ? [TV Zone/Newsday]